50 years, Roger Clay Palmer has been producing poetry, paintings, installations and,
primarily, a large body of drawings. Ruthless black humor blends
with gentle compassion in a world where animals and objects often mimic
and reflect us. Growing up on a ranch in Florida listening to family
members tell stories, his work reflects his love of Southern oral tradition. Strongly affected by his experiences in the army
before being discharged as a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War, he
often focuses on the dark side of current events. Six weeks in Japan in 1985
deeply affected his work; as with Japanese haiga and Zenga, words
are an indispensable component of his brush and pigment and ink drawings.
of drawings and artifacts have been shown in such venues as Diverseworks in Houston
(solo and group shows); NEXUS in Atlanta; Southeastern Center for Contemporary
Art in Winston-Salem, NC; Polk Museum of Art, Lakeland, FL.; Jacksonville Museum
of Art, FL; Montana State Gallery; Tampa Museum of Art; and Ringling (FL)
Museum of Art, which purchased an installation for their permanent collection.
He has received a regional NEA Grant, two Florida Individual Artists grants, as
well as grants to do installations at Miami Waves Film Festival; Nexus; and The
Artists' Alliance in Tampa, FL. He participated in a NEA funded collaborative
performance work, "Smarter than Dogs", and a collaborative project
with PWA’s which traveled to Miami and Orlando.
He has self-published 3 books, one of which (“The Inheritance and Other
Stories ") is archived at Franklin Furnace, NYC, another at Virginia
Commonwealth University; another was displayed at Houston Museum of
Contemporary Art. Poetry and/or images were published in Sonoma Review (U. of
Arizona); the Journal of the NEA; and Tabloid Magazine. He was included in the
2012 book “100 Southern Artists”.
Since 2008, solo shows
include: “In Dog Light” at USF Contemporary Art Museum, Tampa (with a catalog
essay by curator David Norr); Marcia Wood Gallery in Atlanta; and 80 drawings “Taking
On the Right Wing” at Tempus Projects in Tampa. Recent group shows include: “Dark
Poets” at Maryland Institute College of Art’s Decker Gallery; “Freaks“ at
Brooklyn‘s Privateer Gallery; Atlantic Center for the Arts, New Smyrna Beach
FL; and 4 person shows at Mindy Solomon
Gallery in St. Petersburg and Blue Spiral in Asheville, NC.
He works reclusively, often in a cabin he hand built in Ozello, FL.